Chapter 43 - If Not Enlightment In This Life
An azure phoenix soared into the sky, turning everything around it into cinder and dust. The world was now in an apocalyptic state, painted in the color of death and destruction.
True to her words, Liu Meng had started to bury the entire world along with Li Yiming. Not only the people but every lifeform, ranging from trees, animals and even landscape. Everything was burned away.
Liu Meng suddenly stopped flapping her wings, noticing a glacial breeze around her. It carried such a freezing cold with it that the heat was instantly sucked out of the air, and snowflakes could be seen forming.
“Heaven’s Punishment? How many times does this make?”
With a flap of her wings, the blue phoenix resumed its flight and spread out another ring of fire.
“Let’s see how many times you can do this…” Liu Meng said. A crevice then opened on her forehead, revealing something resembling a third eye. What appeared turned out to be a blue spherical crystal, in which she had just imprisoned her Heart Trial clone. The gemstone siphoned all of Heaven’s Punishment’s power, growing brighter by the second.
“Heart Trial versus Heaven’s Punishment… Are you trying to kill me, or empower me?” The fissure on Liu Meng’s forehead closed up, and Liu Meng emitted a loud cry as she felt her power grow even stronger.
As Liu Meng’s flames overwhelmed the abnormal cold, everything around her ignited once again. Before diving back down, she turned around and looked toward the East.
‘That’s where I left Li Yiming… What’s happening over there?’ Liu Meng sped through the air.
The entire city was now nothing but a giant, smoldering ruin. If it was not for the small green oasis preserved in the downtown park, one would not have been able to guess that there was ever a city at all. Liu Meng appeared in the distance and dashed toward the small spot of green.
“Stop!” Liu Meng was still too slow, unable to reach Li Yiming before he was swallowed whole by a newly formed fissure in the air.
“I’ll get you back, whether you’re in heaven or in hell…” The flames once again burst out from Liu Meng’s body, erasing the last trace of color left in the horizon.
* * *
A body was spat out of the rupture created by Mr. Xie, falling down onto the ruins of the stadium.
“Is he dead?” Yun Yiyuan, who had been on his guard, was taken aback at seeing Li Yiming’s corpse.
“Li Yiming…” Qing Linglong slowly stood up with a severe countenance.
“Liu Meng killed him…” Qing Qiaoqiao frowned as she could feel the scent on the kitchen knife.
“He’s dead?” Mr. Xie, who had not noticed Yun Yiyuan’s severe countenance, was struck by joy at seeing the success of his mission, and he looked at Yun Yiyuan with contempt. ‘I’ll put you in your place once I become a sage…’
“The collapse has halted…” Wu Yun slowly put down his weapon and vanished as he stared at Li Yiming’s corpse.
The young employee, who had been craning her neck to see what was going on, was confused as she wondered whether it was the right time to go give the bag to Li Yiming. However, she was scared of leaving the one spot that was left untouched within the entire stadium.
“Li Yiming’s dead. The threat is no more, what more do you want, Mr. Yun?” Mr. Xie said in a rather aggressive tone.
Yun Yiyuan snorted and flew into the distance, leaving behind a ray of light.
“Well, here’s the corpse. Mission accomplished.” Eyeglasses stood up and turned around.
“Wait…” Big Beard said as he performed numerous scans on Li Yiming’s corpse. All results indicated that Li Yiming was indeed dead, but there was something that bugged him.
“We should listen to Big Beard. Heaven’s Laws should be notifying us if he’s really dead…” Qing Linglong said with a severe countenance as she readied her weapon.
“Also, where is Liu Meng? Why isn’t she coming back?” Qing Qiaoqiao stood behind her sister, unwilling to approach the body.
“You, go check his corpse.” Mr. Xie, who was cautious out of habit, ordered the young tailor.
“Yes,” The tailor obeyed and rushed toward the body. He thought Mr. Xie to be too cautious and careful, but could not criticize him for it when his advancement to become a sage was on the line.
“He’s been dead for a while now. Even his muscles have stiffened…” The tailor concluded after checking Li Yiming’s pulse on both his neck and his chest.
“Bring me his head.” Mr. Xie squinted as he glanced at Qing Linglong.
Qing Qiaoqiao frowned at hearing the order but chose to not intervene.
“Yes.” The tailor smiled cruelly as he reached out for Li Yiming’s neck. By accomplishing the task, he would secure his role as Mr. Xie’s most competent subordinate.
“Ahhhhhhhh!” A scream was suddenly heard. It was not loud by any means, but the stadium was in such a silence that the noise stood out particularly.
It was the young employee with Mr. Kong’s bag. Although she was an ordinary person, most of the guardians took especially care to avoid her, since she held the bag given by Mr. Kong.
“That bag!” Qing Linglong looked at the object, which was glowing red.
“It’s on fire?” Mr. Xie was confused.
The young employee threw away the bag as it lit up. Instead of falling to the ground, it floated in the air and slowly burned away. All attention was riveted on the item, and it had been the object of many rumors amongst the guardians.
“Don’t worry about it. Just give me his head first.” Mr. Xie urged as his anxiousness grew when he saw the bag turn to dust.
The young tailor quickly took out a giant machete and brought it down with all of his strength at Li Yiming’s neck.
Instead of severing Li Yiming’s neck, his weapon bounced back with such force, his hand started bleeding.
“What?” The young tailor could not believe his eyes.
“Quick! Destroy his corpse!” Mr. Xie sprang to action, throwing a golden needle at Li Yiming’s body. His subordinates also followed suit, shooting out their respective weapons.
“Go!” Big Beard said as his mecha entered firing mode once again. Qing Linglong slashed at Li Yiming with her dual blades before Big Beard has even finished shouting the order.
As every attack was being directed towards Li Yiming’s body, the guardians all had the same thought in mind: who was going to get the kill reward?
The barrage of attack continued on for almost half an hour, and a giant crater of more than five meters deep had been created as a result. As the last strike landed, the guardians looked at the hole, panting, hoping for good fortune, and holding greedy expectations.
“If not enlightenment in this life, when then will I reach it?” A voice was heard from the bottom of the crater.